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Baseball: Shepard rolls past Bloom

Updated: June 28, 2014 6:23AM



Now that’s a home-field advantage.

With its spacious outfield, Shepard played to the power alleys in the gaps Monday, rolling to a 10-0 victory in five innings over Bloom in a Class 4A Marist Regional quarterfinal.

“It’s great. We’re so comfortable with our field here,” Shepard’s Bobby Peterka said. “Our pitchers love the outfield because it’s so deep, not too many home runs. Our field is great, infield and outfield.”

Shepard (16-16), which was 5-12 at one point this season, will play Lincoln-Way North, the top-seed in the sectional, at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday.

“We’re starting to play the way we can,” Shepard coach Frank DiFoggio said.

Shepard scored three runs in the top of the first. The big hit was Mark Albrecht’s two-run triple to right-center, with the ball rolling to the fence.

“The power alleys are huge here, and you can run for days,” Albrecht said. “Their pitcher was really working outside so I took an outside pitch (to right).”

Albrecht scored from third on a Bloom throwing error as Shepard went up 3-0.

The floodgates were open for the Astros who scored three runs in each the third and fourth innings, with Eric Horbach’s RBI single in the fifth wrapping things up.

Peterka finished 2-for-2 with two doubles, two runs and three RBI. Kevin Carmody had a double, RBI and three runs for Shepard. Kevin Knoerzer had a double and two runs.

“We were being patient, not swinging at first-pitch strike,” Peterka said. “We’re seeing some pitches, some strikes and staying in the box.”

Eric Luther finished with two hits for Bloom (11-16).

Southpaw Adam Gregory (3-5) earned the win, allowing four hits and four walks with six strikeouts in five innings. He stranded seven runners, including getting back-to-back strikeouts in the third to pitch out of a bases-loaded jam.

“Trying to pitch to contact,” Gregory said. “I didn’t want to overthrow and hurt myself. I really don’t think about it (runners on). I know my defense will get us out of the innings.”

As for being the underdog against Lincoln-Way North ...

“We’ve got a puncher’s chance,” DiFoggio said with a laugh.



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